4 ounces (about 1 heaping cup) bleu cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Salt and pepper to taste
In a small bowl, use a fork to mash together the cheese and sour cream until it forms a chunky paste about the consistency of cottage cheese. Stir in the buttermilk, mayonnaise and lemon juice. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Store in a covered container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
For a thicker dressing to use as a dip, reduce the lemon juice to 1 tablespoon.
To make a wedge salad, slice a head of iceberg lettuce into 4 quarters. Trim away the core. Drizzle each quarter with 1-2 tablespoons blue cheese dressing and top with 1 teaspoon minced chives and 1 slice of bacon, crumbled.
Together, mayonnaise and buttermilk form the base of ranch dressing. After that, there are many options to kick up the essential formula: Vinegar, for a bit of extra tang. I like to use rice vinegar, which is more delicate, although white wine or cider vinegar would be more traditional. Garlic powder (like mayonnaise, I only keep this around for ranch dressing). Fresh herbs, if you're so inclined.
Just remember the base formula: 1 part mayo to 2 parts buttermilk, with a dash of salt and pepper, and build from there.
I kept the proportions in this recipe small, since I think this is one dressing that's best when it is made fresh. I do make it a little ahead and stick it back in the fridge, since this helps it thicken up before dressing the salad (which I do an instant before bringing it to the table). But it will last a few days in the fridge, so feel free to double it and stash away a jar.
3/4 cup flour
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup water
Sift dry ingredients.
Add water and mix well.
Use to coat fish or chicken filets.
Cover the fish completely.
Deep fry until a nice golden brown